619.10 A Nonexclusive Licensee Cannot Be a Claimant
A nonexclusive licensee is not entitled to register a copyright in the licensee’s own name, because by definition, a nonexclusive licensee does not own the entire copyright in the work.
As a general rule, a nonexclusive licensee is not entitled to file a copyright application, because a nonexclusive licensee is neither the “copyright owner or [an owner] of any exclusive right in the work.” 17 U.S.C. § 408 (A) (specifying the parties who “may obtain registration of the copyright claim”). A nonexclusive licensee may sign or submit an application to register the copyright only if the licensee is a duly authorized agent acting on behalf of the author or a person or entity that owns all the rights under copyright that initially belonged to the author.